WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The move by Turkish banks Isbank and Denizbank to suspend use of Russian payments system Mir makes sense, a senior U.S. government official said on Tuesday, adding that the U.S. expects more banks to be cut off over sanctions risk Mir. Popular with the tens of thousands of Russian tourists who arrived in Turkey this year.
2 of the 5 Turkish banks using Mir were suspended, reflecting their efforts to avoid financial crossfire between the West and Russia and the Turkish government’s balanced diplomatic stance.
“The steps these banks are taking make sense. Cutting off Mir is one of the best ways to protect banks from sanctions risks doing business with Russia,” the U.S. official said, speaking on condition of anonymity speak under the circumstances. “We expect more banks to close Mir because they don’t want to risk being on the wrong side of coalition sanctions.”
After Russia’s February 24 invasion of Ukraine, Washington and its allies have imposed multiple sanctions on Moscow, including targeting Russian banks and President Vladimir Putin.
NATO member Turkey opposes Western sanctions on Russia in principle, and has close ties with Black Sea neighbors Moscow and Kyiv. It also condemned the Russian invasion and dispatched armed drones to Ukraine as part of its diplomatic balance.
However, Western countries are increasingly concerned about increased economic ties between Turkey and Russia, especially after leader Tayyip Er After several meetings between Dogan and Vladimir Putin, including last week in Uzbekistan. Establish business relationships with sanctioned Russians.